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Is it in corporations' best interest to have dumb customers?

13

Posts

  • General_WinGeneral_Win Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Saammiel wrote: »

    My question would be: how do you break a solid piece of iron or whatever a skillet is made out of?

    They can crack if you expose them to an overly large temperature gradient IIRC. Like if you poured ice cold water on a burning hot skillet.

    Also, a lack of information can be detrimental to the functioning of a market, and therefore to a company's business prospects. See the lemon problem.

    But wouldn't the cracking be a problem on the super expensive ones too? Metal is metal...unless its not.

    General_Win on
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  • Dark_SideDark_Side Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    emnmnme wrote: »
    I wonder how long top-quality products last versus store brand. I always figured buying a toaster at the Family Dollar store would cost $10 but it'd break in ten months. I don't know if that's true but, in the back of my mind, if something costs more, it must be more durable. That $50 electric shaver will always outlast the $20 shaver, right?

    2 pages back, but this is always an interesting question. I used to have this argument with my very cheapass high school friend all the time, in fact just today I found a guitar cable in my office that I'd bought when I was 15, and that friend gave me hell over buying it for $40-$50 bucks when there were cords of the same lengths for like $10 or less. The $50 dollar cord has lasted over 10 years with nary a problem, and I can't tell you how many $10 dollar specials have failed me in spectacular ways in that time.

    So yeah, I think the maxim really does hold true that you get what you pay for, where it gets complicated is when marketing gets involved, and you end up paying extra money for a brand or something that provides you no tangible benefit over far cheaper alternatives. For instance Monster Cables; a complete rip-off if there ever was one, but the marketing cons people into believing the myth all the time, even though there are plenty of studies out there to prove Monster's premises false. Budweiser is another good example, they maintain their control of the beer market in the US entirely through their marketing prowess, but their beer is terrible, and they only sell so much of it in part because of an uneducated beer drinking public.

    Dark_Side on
  • darkgruedarkgrue Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Dark_Side wrote: »
    emnmnme wrote: »
    I wonder how long top-quality products last versus store brand. I always figured buying a toaster at the Family Dollar store would cost $10 but it'd break in ten months. I don't know if that's true but, in the back of my mind, if something costs more, it must be more durable. That $50 electric shaver will always outlast the $20 shaver, right?

    2 pages back, but this is always an interesting question. I used to have this argument with my very cheapass high school friend all the time, in fact just today I found a guitar cable in my office that I'd bought when I was 15, and that friend gave me hell over buying it for $40-$50 bucks when there were cords of the same lengths for like $10 or less.

    I'm guessing that you're much older than 15 now though, right?

    See, the thing used to be that you, more or less, used to get what you paid for. You could almost directly correlate how much you paid for something with how long it would last. And that $50 cable was built better than the $10 one. Go back several decades, and buiding high-quality cables and good high-flexibility insulation wasn't easy. Not because it had magically aligned molecular oxygen-free tachyon coverters. It cost more mostly because it cost more to make. Same with the shaver, or the washing machine, back in the day. Defending that purchasing decision today is taking it out of context, since products of that time might actually been characterized by actually having quality.

    But then companies realized they could get people to pay more without actually providing a product that cost more to make. They started expanding the profit margin before actually the product. They stopped selling utility and started selling image.

    And now you've got Monster Cable. Today, that $50 cable wouldn't be better than that $10 cable. It isn't even better than the $2 cable from Monoprice.com, not electrically, and probably not even fancy-overmoulded insulated plugs-wise (if you spend the entire $5 for their "deluxe" cables).

    It's not the only way to market this kind of scam, but what Monster is selling is the feeling of being "smart" to consumers: "See our cables? Don't waste your $2 on cheap cables, buy ours! Here's some pseudoscientific drivel. Don't listen to electrical engingeers, don't listen to the double-blind controlled studies, don't even listen to James Randi! You're smarter than all of them, 'cause you're a Monster customer, and you deserve the very best!"

    Cue P. T. Barnum.

    darkgrue on
  • PelPel Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    The funny part is that Monster cables aren't remotely the most overpriced cables on the market.

    Pel on
  • Jealous DevaJealous Deva Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    What pisses me off is when big box stores only have shit like monster cables, so I have to either pay 30 bucks for a 10 foot USB cable, go from store to store hoping to find a reasonably priced $5 one, or wait 2 days to use my printer/digital camera/etc.

    Jealous Deva on
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    My guess is that most people just pay the $30.

    Fallingman on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Anarchy Rules!Anarchy Rules! Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I remember reading in Freakonomics that insurance prices decreased as the internet and price comparison websites appeared - the companies want people to stay uninformed of their rivals. I remember seeing old games like Civ4 in PCworld that were in the £30 region ($60ish) when it could be acquired much, much cheaper elsewhere. Presumably there are people who don't compare prices.

    Also I hate toothpaste. Is there any real difference between cheap toothpaste, midrange, or expensive toothpaste? Is the expensive stuff just a complete ripoff?

    Anarchy Rules! on
  • GooeyGooey (\/)┌¶─¶┐(\/) pinch pinchRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Pi-r8 wrote: »
    The credit card industry seems to be built entirely on taking advantage of their customers mistakes.

    they give you a card for free. They extend you a line of credit for free. As long as you pay it back on time you don't have to pay anything. But if you're a day late, or you borrow more than you're able to pay back immediately, or you just misread some of the fine print (my bank neglected to tell me that they were now charging a fee for paying bills online- thanks assholes), they'll find many ways to sock you with a fee. It's an incredibly adversarial relationship.

    Charging you with fees when you pay late is nearly entirely how CC companies make money. If somebody doesn't understand how a line of credit (revolving loan) works they deserve to get nailed with interest fees. Ignorance is not an excuse. That is how that shit works.

    Ideally, you shouldn't be using a CC for anything other than emergency purchases anyway. Emergency, as in, "I dont have enough money in my checking account as well as my savings to buy this absolutely critically important thing" since nearly all banks will do instant transfers using some sort of internet portal.



    About cables, just plan ahead and buy stuff from Blue Jean Cables. Super high quality, super low prices. Also they told Monster to eat a dick when they threatened to file a (bogus) lawsuit against them.

    Gooey on
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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Gooey wrote: »
    Pi-r8 wrote: »
    The credit card industry seems to be built entirely on taking advantage of their customers mistakes.

    they give you a card for free. They extend you a line of credit for free. As long as you pay it back on time you don't have to pay anything. But if you're a day late, or you borrow more than you're able to pay back immediately, or you just misread some of the fine print (my bank neglected to tell me that they were now charging a fee for paying bills online- thanks assholes), they'll find many ways to sock you with a fee. It's an incredibly adversarial relationship.

    Charging you with fees when you pay late is nearly entirely how CC companies make money. If somebody doesn't understand how a line of credit (revolving loan) works they deserve to get nailed with interest fees. Ignorance is not an excuse. That is how that shit works.

    Ideally, you shouldn't be using a CC for anything other than emergency purchases anyway.
    Emergency, as in, "I dont have enough money in my checking account as well as my savings to buy this absolutely critically important thing" since nearly all banks will do instant transfers using some sort of internet portal.

    What? Why?

    Credit Cards are perfectly fine tools for all your purchasing needs as long as you don't leave a balance riding on them month to month.

    It's funny seeing your first paragraph being "You've got to understand this shit" and then the next being "Credit Cards are BAD!!!! Avoid using them!!".

    Credit Cards are only bad if you are dumb enough not to pay them off every month.

    shryke on
  • GooeyGooey (\/)┌¶─¶┐(\/) pinch pinchRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    shryke wrote: »
    Gooey wrote: »
    Pi-r8 wrote: »
    The credit card industry seems to be built entirely on taking advantage of their customers mistakes.

    they give you a card for free. They extend you a line of credit for free. As long as you pay it back on time you don't have to pay anything. But if you're a day late, or you borrow more than you're able to pay back immediately, or you just misread some of the fine print (my bank neglected to tell me that they were now charging a fee for paying bills online- thanks assholes), they'll find many ways to sock you with a fee. It's an incredibly adversarial relationship.

    Charging you with fees when you pay late is nearly entirely how CC companies make money. If somebody doesn't understand how a line of credit (revolving loan) works they deserve to get nailed with interest fees. Ignorance is not an excuse. That is how that shit works.

    Ideally, you shouldn't be using a CC for anything other than emergency purchases anyway.
    Emergency, as in, "I dont have enough money in my checking account as well as my savings to buy this absolutely critically important thing" since nearly all banks will do instant transfers using some sort of internet portal.

    What? Why?

    Credit Cards are perfectly fine tools for all your purchasing needs as long as you don't leave a balance riding on them month to month.

    It's funny seeing your first paragraph being "You've got to understand this shit" and then the next being "Credit Cards are BAD!!!! Avoid using them!!".

    Credit Cards are only bad if you are dumb enough not to pay them off every month.

    Perhaps I didn't explain myself effectively.

    Most people can't manage their money that effectively. Hence the existence of the industry. For the vast majority of mouthbreathers credit cards are a bad idea because they tend to forget that it is, in fact, "real" money.

    Also I would note that in some cases you actually pay more by purchasing something with a CC since the business may pass off their fees to you. Gasoline, for instance.

    Gooey on
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  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Audio Game Developer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Gooey wrote: »
    Also I would note that in some cases you actually pay more by purchasing something with a CC since the business may pass off their fees to you. Gasoline, for instance.

    Usually, they just pass it on to EVERYONE, including cash customers.

    Incenjucar on
  • GooeyGooey (\/)┌¶─¶┐(\/) pinch pinchRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Gooey wrote: »
    Also I would note that in some cases you actually pay more by purchasing something with a CC since the business may pass off their fees to you. Gasoline, for instance.

    Usually, they just pass it on to EVERYONE, including cash customers.

    Typically, yes, fees and taxes and such are typically embedded into the prices of the goods we buy. But in some cases they aren't entirely.

    Gooey on
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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Gooey wrote: »
    Also I would note that in some cases you actually pay more by purchasing something with a CC since the business may pass off their fees to you. Gasoline, for instance.

    Usually, they just pass it on to EVERYONE, including cash customers.

    Yeah.

    The only places I've ever seen with a Cash Discount policy are small time computer stores.

    shryke on
  • ImprovoloneImprovolone Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    darkgrue wrote: »

    Cue P. T. Barnum.

    I say this as a stickler and a Circus history fan; he never said that line that is accredited to him.

    Oh, and my razor designed 50+ years ago beats the shit out of what (royal) you is probably using.

    Improvolone on
    Voice actor for hire. My time is free if your project is!
  • AtomikaAtomika not a robot. does not eat bugs!Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Saammiel wrote: »

    My question would be: how do you break a solid piece of iron or whatever a skillet is made out of?

    They can crack if you expose them to an overly large temperature gradient IIRC. Like if you poured ice cold water on a burning hot skillet.

    Also, a lack of information can be detrimental to the functioning of a market, and therefore to a company's business prospects. See the lemon problem.

    But wouldn't the cracking be a problem on the super expensive ones too? Metal is metal...unless its not.

    Well, certain vulcanization and anodization techniques improve tensile strength and durability and whatnot, but the difference is largely measured not unlike all quality gradients: a decreasingly ascending curve along price points.

    The difference between the $5 skillet and the $40 skillet is much different between the $40 and the $200.

    Same as everything else. The $50 guitar is much worse than the $300, but the $300 is barely different from the $3000. But all those numbers mean is that at some point the consumer stops paying for quantifiable quality and starts paying for other things, like preference, scarcity, whathaveyou.

    Atomika on
  • darkgruedarkgrue Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    darkgrue wrote: »

    Cue P. T. Barnum.

    I say this as a stickler and a Circus history fan; he never said that line that is accredited to him.

    I know. Most "well known" quotes are misquotes. But then, to be fair, I didn't quote him at all, did I? All I did was invoke his memory. :P
    Oh, and my razor designed 50+ years ago beats the shit out of what (royal) you is probably using.

    Not that you were arguing against it, this only goes to prove my point. Before manufacturers learned to optimize for profit margin (which includes planned obsolescence), consumers got better products for their dollar.

    However, I'd wager your razor's not an electric. Blade razors really haven't changed much over the years in any way that's mattered. But the one thing that hasn't changed that I care deeply about is they give me really bad skin problems. I'm stuck with an inefficient, not-quite-so-close, shave. :(

    How'd we get from Monster cables to razors?

    darkgrue on
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Saammiel wrote: »

    My question would be: how do you break a solid piece of iron or whatever a skillet is made out of?

    They can crack if you expose them to an overly large temperature gradient IIRC. Like if you poured ice cold water on a burning hot skillet.

    Also, a lack of information can be detrimental to the functioning of a market, and therefore to a company's business prospects. See the lemon problem.

    But wouldn't the cracking be a problem on the super expensive ones too? Metal is metal...unless its not.

    Well, certain vulcanization and anodization techniques improve tensile strength and durability and whatnot, but the difference is largely measured not unlike all quality gradients: a decreasingly ascending curve along price points.

    The difference between the $5 skillet and the $40 skillet is much different between the $40 and the $200.

    Same as everything else. The $50 guitar is much worse than the $300, but the $300 is barely different from the $3000. But all those numbers mean is that at some point the consumer stops paying for quantifiable quality and starts paying for other things, like preference, scarcity, whathaveyou.

    Sputtered titanium frying pans are awesomely non-stick though and it doesn't scrub off (easily).

    electricitylikesme on
  • AtomikaAtomika not a robot. does not eat bugs!Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Sputtered titanium frying pans are awesomely non-stick though and it doesn't scrub off (easily).

    True, but that's an actual different animal from a cast-iron skillet. And Academy and Williams-Sonoma are both selling cast-iron skillets, as the story goes.

    Atomika on
  • autono-wally, erotibot300autono-wally, erotibot300 love machine Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    japan wrote: »
    emnmnme wrote: »
    Oh, yeah, and bottled water. If consumers knew it didn't come fresh from a mountain spring, they would sooner buy a water filter and make their own super-clean water. Which isn't to say tap water is dirty.

    I think filtered bottled water is primarily a US thing. Generally if you buy it in the UK it's spring water.

    Coca-Cola tried to do the filtered water thing with Dasani-branded water, but the tabloids made fun of it for weeks and then they accidentally poisoned a bunch of people, so it didn't take off and they withdrew it from the market.

    this is true
    even the discounter water you can buy for 14 cents a bottle usually comes from a spring in germany

    autono-wally, erotibot300 on
    kFJhXwE.jpgkFJhXwE.jpg
  • autono-wally, erotibot300autono-wally, erotibot300 love machine Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Fireflash wrote: »
    Pi-r8 wrote: »
    The credit card industry seems to be built entirely on taking advantage of their customers mistakes.

    they give you a card for free. They extend you a line of credit for free. As long as you pay it back on time you don't have to pay anything. But if you're a day late, or you borrow more than you're able to pay back immediately, or you just misread some of the fine print (my bank neglected to tell me that they were now charging a fee for paying bills online- thanks assholes), they'll find many ways to sock you with a fee. It's an incredibly adversarial relationship.

    WTF? If anything it's much simpler for them if you pay your bills online rather than send snailmail every month.

    it probably isn't: additional infrastructure, security concerns..

    autono-wally, erotibot300 on
    kFJhXwE.jpgkFJhXwE.jpg
  • The Black HunterThe Black Hunter Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Pata wrote: »
    I've always seen bottled water as you paying for convenience. You either didn't bother or didn't feel like preparing a bottle in advance, so you can get a bottle for a dollar.

    It's not what I'd call a rip off.
    It's a fucking tiny amount of water that they generally get from a tap for a dollar, then ship across the country using up a huge amount of resources on packaging and shipping.

    It's a huge fucking ripoff. I hope Washington (and other states) starts taxing the shit out of it.

    Very late on this, but no, hell no

    I don't want to have to pay 100% more for a bottle of water just because I forgot to bring one

    I buy it so I have a bottle, it also comes with chilled water inside, BONUS

    then I refill it constantly for a few months before losing it and buying another

    The Black Hunter on
  • Dark_SideDark_Side Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Gooey wrote: »
    Pi-r8 wrote: »
    The credit card industry seems to be built entirely on taking advantage of their customers mistakes.

    they give you a card for free. They extend you a line of credit for free. As long as you pay it back on time you don't have to pay anything. But if you're a day late, or you borrow more than you're able to pay back immediately, or you just misread some of the fine print (my bank neglected to tell me that they were now charging a fee for paying bills online- thanks assholes), they'll find many ways to sock you with a fee. It's an incredibly adversarial relationship.

    Charging you with fees when you pay late is nearly entirely how CC companies make money. If somebody doesn't understand how a line of credit (revolving loan) works they deserve to get nailed with interest fees. Ignorance is not an excuse. That is how that shit works.

    Ideally, you shouldn't be using a CC for anything other than emergency purchases anyway. Emergency, as in, "I dont have enough money in my checking account as well as my savings to buy this absolutely critically important thing" since nearly all banks will do instant transfers using some sort of internet portal.
    .

    There's nothing wrong with using a credit card, you just have to be sure you stay on top of it, as most banks have all sorts of little underhanded tactics they use to nail you with fees. Like arbitrarily switching due dates, jacking rates for no reason, or like BofA's penchant for running debits and credits on my checking account in such a way to maximize potential for an overdraft (almost always in the <$5 range) and then cash advancing over $100 off of my credit card, which is of course charged at an astronomical interest rate, and to make it even worse, it's the last thing you pay off on the card, since any payments you make get applied to regular debits first.

    So yeah, banks take what I consider criminal advantage of credit card customers, and even when you're completely on top of things, it's still amazingly easy for them to find ways to nail you with fees.

    Dark_Side on
  • Mortal SkyMortal Sky queer punk hedge witchRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Same as everything else. The $50 guitar is much worse than the $300, but the $300 is barely different from the $3000. But all those numbers mean is that at some point the consumer stops paying for quantifiable quality and starts paying for other things, like preference, scarcity, whathaveyou.
    As a guitarist, I can tell you that guitars DO get better with price (in general). It's one of the few truly artisan-based industries left. It's a little like cars. A Honda Civic is not as good as a BMW M3. However, that M3 is going to get fucking destroyed by, say, a Ferrari 430 Scuderia. Now, yeah, to most people for everyday use, the BMW will be more than adequate for anything. But for the true pro or for someone who really cares, going the extra arm and leg in price is a dream come true.

    Now just replace the Civic with a Squier Stratocaster ($100), the BMW M3 with a Fender Stratocaster American Standard (about $1200), and the Ferrari with a $25000 1960s vintage strat with original pickups and restored hardware. Having played all three at some point (I love my local guitar shop), I can tell you the vintage Strat really has that extra tonal magic and the perfect amount of wear.

    Actually, I also skipped the low-midrange guitars. To keep the fender strat theme, let's say a Mexican-made Strat (~500 bucks) is on the same tier relative to a car as, say, an Audi A4. Not crazy perfect, but better than el cheapo.

    Mortal Sky on
  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Pata wrote: »
    I've always seen bottled water as you paying for convenience. You either didn't bother or didn't feel like preparing a bottle in advance, so you can get a bottle for a dollar.

    It's not what I'd call a rip off.
    It's a fucking tiny amount of water that they generally get from a tap for a dollar, then ship across the country using up a huge amount of resources on packaging and shipping.

    It's a huge fucking ripoff. I hope Washington (and other states) starts taxing the shit out of it.

    Very late on this, but no, hell no

    I don't want to have to pay 100% more for a bottle of water just because I forgot to bring one

    I buy it so I have a bottle, it also comes with chilled water inside, BONUS

    then I refill it constantly for a few months before losing it and buying another

    Adding on to this, calling bottled water a ripoff is a misnomer. It's that amount because of the cost of the resources used to get it into your hand. It's a waste of natural resources, though, of course.

    FirstComradeStalin on
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  • CervetusCervetus Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Fireflash wrote: »
    Pi-r8 wrote: »
    The credit card industry seems to be built entirely on taking advantage of their customers mistakes.

    they give you a card for free. They extend you a line of credit for free. As long as you pay it back on time you don't have to pay anything. But if you're a day late, or you borrow more than you're able to pay back immediately, or you just misread some of the fine print (my bank neglected to tell me that they were now charging a fee for paying bills online- thanks assholes), they'll find many ways to sock you with a fee. It's an incredibly adversarial relationship.

    WTF? If anything it's much simpler for them if you pay your bills online rather than send snailmail every month.

    it probably isn't: additional infrastructure, security concerns..

    Yeah, because credit cards have really been on top of this whole internet security thing.

    Cervetus on
    The libertarian response to anything is, "Sure, that works fine in practice, but it doesn't fly in theory."
  • CyvrosCyvros London 1965Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Gooey wrote: »
    Cervetus wrote: »
    What I'm learning from this thread is that Apple makes extra money by having poor manufacturing.

    A significant number of Apple products are made right alongside Dell products in China.

    I mean, it is some of the more upper-end Dell stuff, but c'mon. Dell.


    [tiny]as I type on my Dell laptop oh god please dont die again im sorry i didnt mean it oh god[/tiny]
    Dell's warranties are good and advisable. I only know this because I used mine about a dozen times in the three year period I got for my old laptop (the period ends in about a week, but I haven't touched the thing since February).

    Now, what this says about Dell's product quality is another thing altogether.

    Cyvros on
    Cy turned out to be much better in person.
  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited April 2010
    I am only to page three here, and will catch up, but I feel the need to make a point here. Corps may be regarded legally to be a single entity, but they are made up of many people. Marketing may want people to be dumb sheep in specific circumstances, but customer service almost universally wants the customers to be smart. It results in less repetitive motion injuries to the face and forehead.

    Just_Bri_Thanks on
    Some days I just want to smack people with a rolled up newspaper. Or a phone book.
    A folding chair is looking like an attractive option right now too...
  • HeartlashHeartlash Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    How's about we sum it up like this:

    A business will want people to believe whatever will generate the most profit for that business. This sort of information is variable depending on the nature of the business's product and its business model.

    For example, a good processor company will want consumers to understand how and why their processor is technically better than competitor processors. A bad processor company will want consumers to be ignorant of why their processor is bad, perhaps instead shifting focus to decreased costs, etc.

    So the answer to " Is it in corporations' best interest to have dumb customers?" is a simple "Maybe, maybe not".

    A better question is, "Is it in a business's interest to shape your understanding of their particular service or product?" to which the answer would be "Yes".

    Heartlash on
    My indie mobile gaming studio: Elder Aeons
    Our first game is now available for free on Google Play: Frontier: Isle of the Seven Gods
  • LeCausticLeCaustic Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Corporations want idiots buying their products and making them. You forgot that last part

    LeCaustic on
    Your sig is too tall. -Thanatos
    kaustikos.png
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Pata wrote: »
    I've always seen bottled water as you paying for convenience. You either didn't bother or didn't feel like preparing a bottle in advance, so you can get a bottle for a dollar.

    It's not what I'd call a rip off.
    It's a fucking tiny amount of water that they generally get from a tap for a dollar, then ship across the country using up a huge amount of resources on packaging and shipping.

    It's a huge fucking ripoff. I hope Washington (and other states) starts taxing the shit out of it.
    Very late on this, but no, hell no

    I don't want to have to pay 100% more for a bottle of water just because I forgot to bring one

    I buy it so I have a bottle, it also comes with chilled water inside, BONUS

    then I refill it constantly for a few months before losing it and buying another
    So... you buy a $1.50 bottle of water once every few months...

    And you don't want that to have to be a $3 bottle of water once every few months, even if it means a big net positive for both the environment and the tax rolls, as well as being a tremendously progressive tax?

    That's pretty fucking unreasonable.

    Thanatos on
  • Jealous DevaJealous Deva Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Mortal Sky wrote: »
    Same as everything else. The $50 guitar is much worse than the $300, but the $300 is barely different from the $3000. But all those numbers mean is that at some point the consumer stops paying for quantifiable quality and starts paying for other things, like preference, scarcity, whathaveyou.
    As a guitarist, I can tell you that guitars DO get better with price (in general). It's one of the few truly artisan-based industries left. It's a little like cars. A Honda Civic is not as good as a BMW M3. However, that M3 is going to get fucking destroyed by, say, a Ferrari 430 Scuderia. Now, yeah, to most people for everyday use, the BMW will be more than adequate for anything. But for the true pro or for someone who really cares, going the extra arm and leg in price is a dream come true.

    Actually there isn't as much difference there than you think. An m3 or corvette gs will destroy a civic, but the ferrari is a marginal improvement over the M3 or vette. Paying the extra 50k for the M3 over the civic will get you probably a 3 minute faster time on the Nordschleife(as an example), the extra 200k after that will get you 20 seconds or so.

    Jealous Deva on
  • GungHoGungHo Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    HamHamJ wrote: »
    Yes.

    Also, I've been wanting to get a snuggie. Those things look cool.
    They now sell them for pets. Because, them being born with built-in snuggies isn't enough.

    GungHo on
    "Adios, mofo" -- TX Gov Rick Perry (R)
  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Pata wrote: »
    I've always seen bottled water as you paying for convenience. You either didn't bother or didn't feel like preparing a bottle in advance, so you can get a bottle for a dollar.

    It's not what I'd call a rip off.
    It's a fucking tiny amount of water that they generally get from a tap for a dollar, then ship across the country using up a huge amount of resources on packaging and shipping.

    It's a huge fucking ripoff. I hope Washington (and other states) starts taxing the shit out of it.
    Very late on this, but no, hell no

    I don't want to have to pay 100% more for a bottle of water just because I forgot to bring one

    I buy it so I have a bottle, it also comes with chilled water inside, BONUS

    then I refill it constantly for a few months before losing it and buying another
    So... you buy a $1.50 bottle of water once every few months...

    And you don't want that to have to be a $3 bottle of water once every few months, even if it means a big net positive for both the environment and the tax rolls, as well as being a tremendously progressive tax?

    That's pretty fucking unreasonable.

    How would it be better for the environment? Unless it caused fewer people to buy bottled water. Where really it'd probably just cause people to buy bottled pop instead.

    Unless the tax is ALSO on that, which would probably amount to a tax on the poor...

    Loklar on
  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    How would it be better for the environment? Unless it caused fewer people to buy bottled water. Where really it'd probably just cause people to buy bottled pop instead.

    Unless the tax is ALSO on that...

    Fewer people buying bottled water would take a hell of a lot of surface transport off the roads and seas.

    Fizzy drinks aren't nearly as bad, because they're usually manufactured as essences that are shipped by tanker then diluted and bottled much closer to the point of sale.

    japan on
  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited April 2010
    japan wrote: »
    Loklar wrote: »
    How would it be better for the environment? Unless it caused fewer people to buy bottled water. Where really it'd probably just cause people to buy bottled pop instead.

    Unless the tax is ALSO on that...

    Fewer people buying bottled water would take a hell of a lot of surface transport off the roads and seas.

    Fizzy drinks aren't nearly as bad, because they're usually manufactured as essences that are shipped by tanker then diluted and bottled much closer to the point of sale.

    Well I don't know why water is only produced in such far-flung places; considering it comes out of the tap. And that doesn't address the likely increase in pop consumption which is terrible for your health (so TV tells me).

    What we should really do is tax carbon. Then we'll see more, smaller bottled-water plants produced for local markets to keep shipping distances low.

    (Mumbles something about carbon taxes being political suicide)

    Loklar on
  • GooeyGooey (\/)┌¶─¶┐(\/) pinch pinchRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Mortal Sky wrote: »
    Same as everything else. The $50 guitar is much worse than the $300, but the $300 is barely different from the $3000. But all those numbers mean is that at some point the consumer stops paying for quantifiable quality and starts paying for other things, like preference, scarcity, whathaveyou.
    As a guitarist, I can tell you that guitars DO get better with price (in general). It's one of the few truly artisan-based industries left. It's a little like cars. A Honda Civic is not as good as a BMW M3. However, that M3 is going to get fucking destroyed by, say, a Ferrari 430 Scuderia. Now, yeah, to most people for everyday use, the BMW will be more than adequate for anything. But for the true pro or for someone who really cares, going the extra arm and leg in price is a dream come true.

    Actually there isn't as much difference there than you think. An m3 or corvette gs will destroy a civic, but the ferrari is a marginal improvement over the M3 or vette. Paying the extra 50k for the M3 over the civic will get you probably a 3 minute faster time on the Nordschleife(as an example), the extra 200k after that will get you 20 seconds or so.


    ...which in real life would be an eternity, even over ~14 miles of track. :P

    I think everyone here is equating "performance" as the only real driver of purchases, which isn't true at all. People derive utility from products in all sorts of different ways, not just how well it performs. In other words, the guy who buys a Ferrari because of the name (or because it looks cool) may see just as much (or maybe even more) value (utility) than the guy who buys it to go fast around a track. Same thing with the guy who buys super-expensive guitars. Performance is one component of many that go into why someone might buy a product. The importance of that (any) product aspect is determined by the customer.

    Gooey on
    919UOwT.png
  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Hey guys, I invented something.

    It's a water-fountain that has an empty plastic-bottle dispenser. The plastic bottles are built like an accordian, so you can fit lots on a truck. I'll sell the empty bottles at a massive profit of 50 cents each. The water is free if you bring your own bottle.

    The water is filtered by the city and there is a sign so kids don't put their mouth on the spout.

    Loklar on
  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    Well I don't know why water is only produced in such far-flung places; considering it comes out of the tap.

    Welcome to the original point.

    japan on
  • GooeyGooey (\/)┌¶─¶┐(\/) pinch pinchRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    japan wrote: »
    Loklar wrote: »
    Well I don't know why water is only produced in such far-flung places; considering it comes out of the tap.

    Welcome to the original point.

    It's simple supply chain management. It's much cheaper to the company to bottle it all in one (or relatively few) plant and ship it in bulk a long way than bottle it in many plants and ship it in small amounts short distances.

    Soda is a bit different as there are actual production steps beyond "put it in a bottle, screw on the cap". Also the industry has been structured that way for the better part of a century. It should be important to note however that Pepsi at least is moving back towards an integrated bottling model by reaquiring Pepsi Bottling Group (PBG) and a few other independent bottlers.

    Gooey on
    919UOwT.png
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    It's a fucking tiny amount of water that they generally get from a tap for a dollar, then ship across the country using up a huge amount of resources on packaging and shipping.

    It's a huge fucking ripoff. I hope Washington (and other states) starts taxing the shit out of it.
    Very late on this, but no, hell no

    I don't want to have to pay 100% more for a bottle of water just because I forgot to bring one

    I buy it so I have a bottle, it also comes with chilled water inside, BONUS

    then I refill it constantly for a few months before losing it and buying another
    So... you buy a $1.50 bottle of water once every few months...

    And you don't want that to have to be a $3 bottle of water once every few months, even if it means a big net positive for both the environment and the tax rolls, as well as being a tremendously progressive tax?

    That's pretty fucking unreasonable.
    How would it be better for the environment? Unless it caused fewer people to buy bottled water. Where really it'd probably just cause people to buy bottled pop instead.

    Unless the tax is ALSO on that, which would probably amount to a tax on the poor...
    They're talking about increasing the tax on soda as well, yes.

    Which will discourage poor people from buying the stuff, which is good because it's basically liquid death.

    Thanatos on
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